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VCB eNews, Volume 12, #35 - The Evolution of Velorution in Nova Scotia


Volume 12, #35: The Evolution of Revolution in Nova Scotia

Shelley Porter, Editor



Editorial: The Evolution of Revolution in Nova Scotia

Rides Captain’s Report 

Other Rides and Events

Bike Culture Finds –

Loose Chain Links

Bike Buy and Sell

About That Funny


“Orchids were not made by an ideal engineer; they are jury-rigged from a limited set of available components.”

  • Steven Jay Gould





People have some funny ideas about evolution. For instance, it’s commonly held that evolution happens slowly, over long periods of time. This is technically true, but many very significant evolutionary changes happen in revolutionary ways, with a big change – like squirrels altering their breeding season in response to climate change – occurring very quickly.  Right now it seems as if a lot of changes in cycling in the province are happening suddenly, even randomly. Bicycle Nova Scotia is 44 years old; Velo Cape Breton is eleven. The changes we are seeing in cycling culture may seem rapid, but what most don’t see is the years of hard work, determined visioning, and kilometres pedalled behind those changes. After many years of independent and collaborative work with cycling organizations in Nova Scotia and elsewhere, Velo Cape Breton has become an affiliate association of Bicycle Nova Scotia. If it seemed strange that as strong and diverse a cycling organization was not part of the provincial body overseeing cycling, here is some perspective from VCB founder, Jacques Cote:


“In 2008, Velo Cape Breton (VCB) did not renew its affiliation with Bicycle Nova Scotia (BNS) and joined International Mountain Bike Association (Canada), for many reasons, but mostly to reduce the important cost of insurance for our members.  At the provincial level, VCB remained very active in the promotion, education and advocacy sectors for recreational and utilitarian cyclists, all the while encouraging and supporting incremental changes at BNS that made it a full-fledged provincial organization to promote not only the competitive aspect of cycling but advocate for better cycling infrastructure and take that leadership position needed in Nova Scotia.  


In Nova Scotia we have the potential to become a cycling province and to grow our infrastructure with dedicated bike lanes, rural routes, single-track trails, and education programs.  I am very pleased that VCB has moved to rejoin BNS to help bring together the cycling community, grow the capacity and reach of BNS to support cyclists across the province.”


 Below is the text of the letter from Bicycle Nova Scotia, welcoming Velo Cape Breton into the provincial sphere. Individual memberships are available as well, and I would encourage all cyclists to join. This is our voice with government and our fellowship with other cyclists. After such a warm welcome, we could hardly stay stuck in our past. Things have changed.




Bicycle Nova Scotia

 5516 Spring Garden Rd. 4th Fl.

 Halifax, NS B3J 1G6



 Attn: Velo Cape Breton Bicycle Association

 PO Box 485, Sydney

 Nova Scotia B1P 6H4 



May 29th, 2015


Dear Velo Cape Breton, 


We are excited to see the cycling movement in Nova Scotia growing every year, and wish to express our gratitude to Velo Cape Breton for your incredible work over the years in growing a cycling culture in so many communities across the Island. We are especially excited that this year marks the 10th anniversary of the Nova Scotia Bicycle Summit, an event that was started by Velo Cape Breton and has since become an annual event, celebrating, sharing and taking action on all that bicycling is and could be in Nova Scotia. 


As you are aware, Bicycle Nova Scotia is in a period of growth, restructuring and changing how we engage our fellow cycling organizations, clubs and groups that support more active transportation in Nova Scotia. In 2012 we officially folded in the Nova Scotia Bikeways Coalition (of which VCB was a founding member) into the broader BNS, as we decided that having two provincial cycling organizations was not the most effective direction for the movement. BNS continues to represent sport, recreation and commuting cyclists across Nova Scotia. 


Our major projects for the coming year are finally celebrating the implementation of the Blue Route (we expect 5-7 legs of the Blue Route to be designated between July and October of 2015, with additional legs already planned for 2016 and 2017). This project has been a long time in the making, but we are so pleased that it is to become a reality. Weʼve been involved in the provincial active transportation policy framework, working with Department of Transportation and Infrastructure Renewal to develop a bicycle route and signage policy, reaching out to Nova Scotian communities with our Women on Wheels senior womenʼs cycling project, developing the Cycle Nova Scotia brand and map series, and supporting multiple clubs and organizations to grow all kinds of cycling. We are proud to be a partner in the 10th annual Nova Scotia Bicycle Summit to be held this coming October in the Annapolis Valley. 


To better serve our members, and affiliated and associated organizations weʼve revamped our website,, added a calendar for all cycling events in the province and started a monthly newsletter to bring together stories and updates from the cycling community. Weʼve also purchased an organization-wide insurance policy through OASIS and are pleased to be able to offer this to member organizations. 


In the coming year, we will be exploring a province wide bicycle friendly business network to coincide with Blue Route development and expanding our bicycle education programs through CAN-BIKE and by supporting the Ecology Action Centreʼs Making Tracks Program. We will also be listening and learning and working to support new initiatives across Nova Scotia, engaging in national conversations about increasing bicycling and seeking new opportunities to continue to catalyze change. 


An important part of growing our voice and influence at the provincial level is growing our network and membership base. We are so pleased that you have decided to join BNS as an Associated Club. 


Your membership allows us to include your organization and members in our voice as we advocate at the provincial level for improved bicycle facilities, programs and policies.



Susanna Fuller and Lola Doucet (co-Presidents, Bicycle Nova Scotia)



Summary breakdown of the results of the 2014 Nova Scotia Cycling Summit. (Jacques Cote, photo).






Another great weekend has passed. I can say that because these newsletters are always a week behind events. I know it was a great weekend because the Englishtown Mussel fest was Saturday and the Miner's Pick ride was on Sunday. I hope I made it to Sunday's ride but life happens and sometimes these things don't work out. Also I would like to take this time to bring attention to one of our Board members who is doing an excellent job promoting the Association but because she is behind the scenes, doesn't get the recognition she deserves. A round of applause and a thank you for all your work to Britney MacNeil the next time you see her. Our events are all being posted to Facebook and she is in charge of pretty much all of Velo's publicity, so I am sure most of you have seen them.


The first weekend of July is filled. Saturday the 4th will probably see me in Halifax attending my second WNBR (for the uninitiated that is World Naked Bike Ride). It was fun last year and should be a good time again this year.  Be spontaneous, be daring, be something that challenges your comfort zone. Sunday is the first ever Ride and ‘Rite - I am hoping we get a good turnout. The ride will certainly not be taxing and no-one will be judging the literary  work  the ride leader wants us to do.  Be spontaneous, be daring, be something that challenges your comfort zone. 


And last, but certainly not least, is the Heartland Tour Ride on Monday. July 6th. Get out and support a great cause. Be spontaneous, be daring, be something that challenges your comfort zone. 


Have you gotten my message this week? I sometimes find it necessary to be repetitious but the message requires repeating. I want you to get out there and do something that challenges you - physically, mentally or spiritually - or all three. It may be scary but you just might end up having a hell of a good time and learning a new appreciation of the world and people around you, including yourself and what you are capable of doing. And that ends this week’s soapbox lecture.  Hope you had a good week.



JP Martin, Rides Captain




Special to the Rides Captain: Miner’s Pick Ride Report – from Stan and Charlene Wadden, Ride Leaders and Cycling Ambassadors

 Miner's Pick Ride, Sunday June 28, 2015

On Sunday June 28, 10 cyclists departed from the bathroom- and cyclist- friendly Atlantic Superstore on Reserve St. in Glace Bay to the wide eyes of small children. En route we were greeted by tooting horns and big waves from motorists, who were more than courteous as we cycled through the streets. Involved in the ride were cyclists who had never rode in a group or on busy streets before, and they were very pleased with the experience. When it was over, those who didn't have prior commitments enjoyed a refreshing cup of tea and cinnamon roll in the eating area at the Superstore.

The ride leaders, Stan & Charlene Wadden, would like to say “Thank you” to all who participated.







CBRM Recreation is looking for 3 certified Cycling Facilitators/Instructors (paid positions).

The CBRM Recreation Department, in partnership with Velo Cape Breton, plans to run a cycling program in August of 2015. The program will be aimed at providing beginner cycling instruction to children between the ages of 10 and 12. The program will run for one week (Monday to Friday) and children will register for either five morning or five afternoon sessions.   The total number of children for each session will be 12 to 15.  Training will take place at the Don and Ron Deleski Cycling Park in Open Hearth Park and in a classroom setting (site to be determined).

Potential facilitators/instructors must: 

  • Commit to attend First Aid, High Five, Can-Bike 1 and 2 and Making Tracks courses as well as a general bike maintenance course. Participants must commit to eight hours of volunteering in return for certification in these courses.
  • Have cycling experience.
  • Wear a helmet and other safety equipment as deemed necessary.
  • Be attending or have graduated from high school.
  • Provide up to date criminal record check with vulnerable sector screening.

Experience working with children and a valid driver’s license/access to a vehicle is considered an asset.

Please mail or deliver your resume to the Cape Breton Regional Municipality Recreation Department, 320 Esplanade, Room 204, Sydney, N.S., B1P 7B9; or email:

Deadline for applications is 7 July 2015.




Heartland Tour 2015: The annual Heartland Tour will roll into Sydney on July 6. We saw lots of beautiful Heartland Tour jerseys at the Lobster Roll Rides. Come out and support this tour to promote cardiac health. Please register online! Details at





This section features bike-friendly places and spaces, as submitted by our members. You can write in and tell us about a retail or service outlet that encourages cycling, whether it be by offering cyclist-friendly food, safe pathways, or just being there when you need it (like a public washroom).


The CBRM, Velo Cape Breton, and many private businesses and institutions in our municipality have installed bike racks at many locations, including at the Mayflower Mall, for the convenience of shoppers who arrive by bicycle. No matter where you go, there is a convenient and secure place to lock your bike.





A guide to Canada’s most bike-friendly city:


Do you need another reason to get on a bike?:


Monetary motivation helps:


Finally, a place to carry my cheeseburger:


Hey, we’re a small community:





 (Ads will run for 3 weeks; if your item has not sold in that time, please resend the ad to the editor. Thanks!)


WANTED: triple crankset to fit square taper bottom bracket (and bottom bracket if you have one!), old is fine.  Looking for something cheap or free for an old frame rebuild.


WANTED:  Bion-X electric bike.  

E-mail Patsi @



FOR SALE: Giant Cypress comfort bike. Men’s, size 17 in. Excellent condition, just tuned up at SportChek. $200. Contact


Still for sale: Cleats, suitable for eggbeater-style pedals. Crank Brothers brand. New, still in box, ordered wrong model. $10. Contact


Still available: FOR SALE: Two mountain bikes, one Giant Rincon 6061 aluxx, frame size 14 in., $300; one Norco XFR, frame size 15, $300. Both about 4 years old, rarely used, stored inside. Will sell together for $500. Contact Heather at











Velo Cape Breton is the island-wide voice of cyclists, working for better cycling in our great island. Visit our website that will introduce you to some of our activities.   If you have any question(s) or suggestion(s), please contact us

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Joining VCB is a proof of support to the community development and advocacy work done by the hard working volunteers of this club. Your $10 will go a long way.   It's your legacy to the rising generation. Check our Facebook page.



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